Thursday, 2 July 2015


Aretha Franklin sang about it, and Erasure asked for us to give a little - yes, I'm talking about respect.

I mean the true meaning of the word too.  There seems to be a distinct lack of it at the moment, and this needs changing please.

I know when people are young they do silly things, but - thinking here about the recent story of the backpackers in Malaysia - if you're lucky enough to be able to take a year off to go travelling at least first read a guide book about the areas you're planning to visit.

I would imagine in this digitally enabled age you're able to find such information on tablets and smartphones too - they're not just for taking the ubiquitous 'duck pout' selfies!

If you're travelling to a conservative area of the globe, which has strict customs, rules and regulations, read up on it and make sure you don't cause offence.

Having said that, please tell me that getting naked in public and urinating is surely frowned upon in most places still these days?!

And while I'm on the topic of respect, I was also appalled to hear about the two 17 year-old schoolboys from Cambridgeshire who tried to steal artefacts from Auschwitz.

Whilst on a school history trip they had spotted some items on the ground, including buttons, a rusted hair clipper, and fragments of spoon and glass, near a building where guards had kept prisoners' confiscated belongings.

So what did they do?  They pocketed them.  Apparently they weren't thinking.  Sorry, but who visits somewhere like Auschwitz and then doesn't think?

These were pupils from the independent Perse School, and I read that the headmaster has apologised unreservedly and the boys have expressed real remorse, which I suppose is something.

But I would like to hope that visitors to such places remember the history behind them, and behave in a far more appropriate manner. 

And, although it should go without saying, no selfies.  Know when to show some respect and restraint please.

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